In Part 1, we discussed the pros and cons between shipping your bike through a carrier like UPS versus checking your bike as luggage on an airplane. After you've decided which method you prefer, you need to ensure that you pack your bike correctly so that it arrives at your destination in perfect condition.
Your next decision will be what to pack your bike in: hard case, soft case or cardboard box.
A hard case will provide the most protection, but that doesn't mean that the other options will leave you with a broken bike. If you pack the bike carefully and protect it properly within the case, you'll have to be very unlucky to incur major bike damage. Of course, forums will reveal nightmare stories of crushed bikes and shattered carbon, but the vast majority of people who travel with their bikes do so with no issues when the proper precautions are taken.
Hard, Soft or Cardboard?
Packing the Bike
Start planning a few days before. You'll need to buy some equipment and can expect the packing process to take you up to 90 minutes the first time you do it. Remember to take your time and pay attention to the details. Leaving it until the last moment before setting off for the airport will cause you to rush and not take the proper precautions.